Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Shrove Tuesday

24th February 2020

Shrove Tuesday

Today is Shrove Tuesday - Pancake Day. I will not be making pancakes today. My husband is avoiding gluten and dairy, and my daughter is dieting and the calories involved are just not worth it. I'm relieved. I like pancakes, but not enough to make them just for me.
It's a world of a difference to when the children were all at home. We always had them at tea time, after a small  main meal. The batter was made earlier in the day - a lot of it. Sometimes I would have to make more as they disappeared quickly into little bellies.
Image result for pictures of people eating pancakes
I stood the the stove for hours flipping each individual pancake, often making more than forty during one tea time. They would eat more quickly than I could supply them and they'd wait eagerly for their next one. At the end I was usually too exhausted to have one myself. I usually just sat with a cup of tea and sigh.
The children loved them  though, some dolloping chocolate spread in large spoonfuls into the middle of theirs and carefully easing it to the edges before rolling it, others might have jam and do the same, still others, especially as they got older would squeeze lemon juice liberally all over and cover it with an inordinate amount of sugar. It didn't matter.
At some point in time, I changed the pattern. It occurred  to me that I could make up batches and keep them warm in the oven, thereby being able to eat together and actually maybe enjoy one myself. One time, I remember, I made 50. It took a few hours, but it was worth it. I separated them by putting grease proof paper between each one. How much more relaxed. Why didn't I think of it before?
This was a revelation and worked really well.

But why do we eat pancakes and why is it called, Shrove Tuesday?
Well, it's a Christian tradition. Shrove Tuesday always comes before Ash Wednesday which is the start of the Lenten season. It was customary to be shriven, (absolved ) before lent started, so that the season could be prayerful and get one prepared for the great celebration of Easter. People would often go to confession to put themselves right with God. Actually many still do.
Having pancakes  came about because people would have to eat all the fats and eggs in the house, due to fasting during the following weeks. We no longer have such strict fasts, but we are still encouraged to find ways to do without and live more spiritually

So, although I won't be having pancakes I will be looking at how I can live this lent in a more prayerful and thoughtful way, so that Easter will be for me a  great celebration.

Will you be eating pancakes today or changing things over these next few weeks? It would be good to hear your stories.


  1. You can make coconut flour pancakes. They are gluten free. 😊

    I don't know this tradition. Is it mainly a Catholic tradition?

    1. Thank you Sandi. Something to think about.
      Yes, a Catholic tradition. Like Mardi Gras - Fat Tuesday, we eat and celebrate before the rigours of lent.

  2. Growing up, we would have "pigs in a blanket," the way my grandmother made them, actually hot dogs wrapped in biscuit dough.

    Tomorrow i have to work and cannot go get the ashes, and it makes me sad.

    1. Never heard of pigs in blankets for Shrove Tuesday. And with biscuit dough - interesting.
      Shame you can't go to get the ashes.
      You can still take a few minutes to ponder on what they mean for you. Do it spiritually . Remember those words the priest says - "Remember man that you are dust, and to dust you will return."
      Don't be sad , be joyful because you'd like to go . And this could be a little thing you offer to Jesus as the stsrt of your lent, a special prayer.


Please feel free to comment with advice and critique.